A South African judge on Sunday gave a directive banning Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir from leaving the country after the International Criminal Court (ICC) called for him to be arrested at the African Union (AU) summit.
Yahoo News reports that al-Bashir is wanted for alleged war crimes against humanity and genocide in the Darfur conflict.
Sources say the ruling was the first time any court has prevented a head of state from leaving a country following a request by the ICC.
“President Omar al-Bashir of Sudan is prohibited from leaving the Republic of South Africa until the final order is made in this application,” Judge Hans Fabricius said in the ruling.
However, despite the court order, Sudanese officials say they are disregarding the court order.
“We will leave on time as scheduled,” Sudan Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour said.
“We are not abiding with any decision of any court. We are here as guests of the government of South Africa. Assurances have been made by that government.
President Bashir is a leading president, a member of the summit of the African Union and will continue attending the summits wherever they are being held inside Africa,” he said.
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